On Tuesday 23 May 1944, a member of the 103 Sqdn, Flying Officer L S Kennedy, took off from Elsham Wolds in the United Kingdom. His mission is mentioned elsewhere on Back to Normandy. You can find the other details of this mission by searching here. Training and cargo flights are not separately mentioned as a mission. The plane left at 22:34.
He flew with a Avro Lancaster (type III, serial ND629, code PM-G).
Campaign report of the USAAF:
(Eighth Air Force): Mission 364: 1,045 bombers and 562 fighters are dispatched to hit airfields and rail targets in France; 3 bombers are lost:
1. 580 B-17s are dispatched to the marshalling yard at Metz (34 bomb), Epinal (36 bomb) and Chaumont (54 bomb); airfields at Orleans/Bricy (17 bomb) and Chateaudun (18 bomb); secondary targets hit are marshalling yards at Saarbrucken, Germany (139 bomb), Bayon (12 bomb), the town of Neunkirchen, Germany (37 bomb), Caen/Carpiquet Airfield (18 bomb) and 12 hit targets of opportunity; 2 B-17s are lost, 2 damaged beyond repair and 50 damaged; 12 airmen are KIA and 4 WIA.
2. 465 B-24s are dispatched to hit airfields at Orleans/Bricy (167 bomb), Bourges (84 bomb), Avord (88 bomb) and Etampes/Mondesir (97 bomb); 1 aircraft hits a target of opportunity; 1 B-24 is lost, 1 damaged beyond repair and 33 damaged; 10 airmen are KIA and 10 MIA.
Escort is provided by 96 P-38s, 142 P-47s and 324 P-51s; none are lost and no Luftwaffe aircraft are claimed; 1 P47 is damaged beyond repair and 1 P-47 and 1 P-51 are damaged; 644 Ninth Air Force fighters also participate with the loss of 2 P-38s and 2 P-47s.
Mission 365: 103 P-51s are dispatched to bomb a railroad bridge at Hasselt, Belgium; 75 bomb escorted by 14 acting as top cover; 1 P-51 is lost, the pilot is MIA.
Mission 366: 4 of 5 B-17s drop 928,000 leaflets on Belgium and The Netherlands without loss.
7 B-24s are dispatched on CARPETBAGGER operations.
(Ninth Air Force): In France, 15 B-26s bomb the airfield at Beaumont-le-Roger in a predawn attack; during the afternoon 58 B-26s bomb coastal batteries at Etretat/Sainte-Marie-Au-Bosc, Maisy and Mont Fleury; and 120+ P-38s strafe and bomb rolling stock in C France.
Campaign report of the RAF:
22/23 May 1944
361 Lancasters and 14 Mosquitos of Nos 1, 3, 6 and 8 Groups carried out the first large raid on Dortmund for a year. 18 Lancasters were lost, 4.8 per cent of the force. The attack fell mainly in the south-eastern districts of Dortmund, mostly in residential areas.
Brunswick: 225 Lancasters and 10 Mosquitos of No 1 and 5 Groups. 13 Lancasters lost, 5.5 per cent of the force. This raid was a failure. The weather forecast had predicted a clear target but the marker aircraft found a complete covering of cloud. There was also interference on the Master Bomber's radio communications, The No 5 Group method could not cope with these conditions and most of the bombing fell in the country areas around Brunswick. A reconnaissance aircraft flying through this area an hour later found it completely free of cloud.
133 aircraft - 112 Halifaxes, 13 Lancasters, 8 Mosquitos - of Nos 6 and 8 Groups again attacked the railway yards at Le Mans. The local report confirms that the bombing was accurate, with much damage to the railways and the nearby Gnome & Rhone factory. 1 Halifax lost.
Orleans: 128 aircraft - 108 Halifaxes, 12 Lancasters, 8 Mosquitos - of Nos 4 and 8 Groups. 1 Halifax lost. Most of the bombs fell on the passenger station and the railway-repair workshops.
26 Mosquitos to Ludwigshafen and 9 to Courtrai, 9 RCM sorties, 21 Serrate and 8 Intruder patrols, 54 aircraft minelaying in the Frisians and off the French coast, 25 OTU sorties. 1 OTU Whitley was lost, probably the last Whitley to be lost on operations.
Total effort for the night: 1,023 sorties, 34 aircraft (3.3 per cent) lost. The raids on Dortmund and Brunswick were the last major Bomber Command raids on German cities until after the invasion forces were firmly established in Normandy.
23/24 May 1944
46 Mosquitos - 24 to Dortmund, 16 to Berlin and 6 to a railway junction at Lison in France, 2 RCM sorties, 2 Serrate patrols, 30 aircraft minelaying off various coasts, 4 aircraft on Resistance operations, 8 OTU sorties. No aircraft lost.
With thanks to the RAF and USAAF.net!
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